Travelling in New Zealand with kids
it may take all your resolve to tackle a 24-hour flight but once you're there, new Zealand more than makes up for the continual chorus of 'are we there yet?'
Although several of the more extreme sports to try in New Zealand will require a minimum age limit of at least ten or eleven years old, it's safe to say that the rest of the country is totally family-friendly with no end of lakes and beaches. National parks are extremely accessible for young explorers with waterfalls and natural hot springs adding to the excitement of spotting whales or dolphins offshore. Spluttering geysers and mud pools, plenty of well-facilitated parking spots and loads of chances to go kayaking, learn about Maori culture and tackle high ropes and adventure parks; what are you waiting for?
Our New Zealand family Holidays
ACTIVITIES FOR FAMILIES IN NEW ZEALAND
Enjoy the night sky
The Dark Sky Reserve on South Island is rated as one of the best on the planet with the base of Mount Cook and the summit of Mount John, just south of Tekapo, about as free from light pollution as you can hope to imagine. Awesome astronomy for mini Patrick Moores and Maggie Aderin-Pococks.
Have a whale of a timeKaikoura, on the east coast of South Island, is one of the world’s best places for whale watching tours, always a wonderful family activity. Sperm whales can be seen all year-round as they’re resident in these waters, but at different times of year you might see humpbacks, orcas (killer whales) and even the mighty Blue whales! Kids will love the fun of looking out for telltale fins and blows in the waves.
Dig for gold or a hot tubFind out more about New Zealand’s gold mining past on the Coromandel Peninsula where there’s a heritage railway and interactive discovery centre in Waihi or, alternatively, dig in the sand and make your own natural hot tub on Hot Water Beach, just along the coast from Whitianga.
Our top New Zealand family Holiday
Small Group Tour - North and South Island of New Zealand
From £5290 to £6545 23 days ex flights
Small group travel:
2021: 14 Apr, 19 May, 13 Oct, 24 Nov
2021: 14 Apr, 19 May, 13 Oct, 24 Nov
If you'd like to chat about New Zealand or need help finding a holiday to suit you we're very happy to help.
TRAVELLING IN NEW ZEALAND WITH KIDS
Caroline Stafford from our New Zealand supplier Silver Fern Holidays gives her family-friendly top tips:“Consider combining a small group tour and a tailor made itinerary. For example, you could join a small group for the first part of your trip, allowing you to enjoy settling in without any worries about finding your way around or what to do. Then, pick up a rental car and explore independently for the rest of your holiday. Also, mix up your transport so kids don’t get bored sitting in a car the whole time – trains, bikes and even horseback are popular options.”
“Don’t skip museums because you have children with you. Many of New Zealand’s museums have excellent interactive exhibits and displays for children; Te Papa, New Zealand’s National Museum in Wellington is a good example, with its ‘quake house’ and lots of educational but also fun activities for children. The Waitangi Museum in the Bay of Island has had extensive development too, and again, has lots of interactive and educational exhibits and displays.”
More about New Zealand
Our temperature & rainfall chart will prove useful when choosing the best time to go to New Zealand, and this page also contains some handy advice on festivals and events.
If you’re looking for your next holiday destination then read our New Zealand travel guide before you consider any other options. We’ve compiled tips and advice for what we think is one of the world’s most exciting holiday destinations right now.
Make the most of your time in New Zealand with our interactive New Zealand map & itineraries page, helping you get around both islands with maximum efficiency, minimum fuss.
New Zealand activities are simply amazing and, as keeping excitement levels in check can be a difficult proposition, we suggest you just let go and scream 'kia ora'.
Maori mythology ascribes New Zealand’s fiords to a giant stonemason, but these deep valleys were actually carved by glaciers over millions of years.
From enormous whales to miniscule glow worms, the wildlife in New Zealand is like nowhere else on Earth – literally - many species, such as the Hector’s dolphin, are found here and here only.
New Zealand walks are some of the finest in the world, taking you through such astonishingly diverse and awe inspiring scenery you may be tempted to just keep going, and going.
As appealing as they may be, you can find mountains, dolphins and bungee jumps in many countries - no, what makes New Zealand truly unique is its Maori culture.
You may not be planning on doing any bungee jumping, but that aside, New Zealand is a very accessible country for travellers with special requirements.
This should always be the first page you come to when looking for New Zealand holidays advice as we've asked for tips from our friends in New Zealand, including Miles Clark, Linzi Bird and Caroline Stafford.
Our guide to responsible tourism in New Zealand is a worthwhile read, with sections on Maori culture, dolphin watching and Easter bunny hunts all helping you travel right.
Small group holidays are the perfect option for any age whether you’re holidaying solo, as a couple or a group of friends, and they're especially good for less confident travellers.